The Cyclones have been up and down. Ottawa put together good performances in the wins and not-so well in the losses.
Ottawa had one of those so-so games Tuesday at home against Hayden. The Wildcats’ press caused Ottawa fits and it resulted in a 39-24 loss by the Cyclones.
“We are not challenging the better teams we play,” Ottawa coach Cliff McCullough said. “We don’t know how to play against a higher level team. We can’t practice against it. We played scared.
We see a Hayden ... we see a Holton ... we get scared. This team does not know how to rise to the occasion. The last few years we have done what we were supposed to. We lost to the teams that were better than us. We don’t know how to take our game to the next level.”
Ottawa gave Hayden a battle for the first quarter. The game was tied at 6-6.
Hayden dominated the rest of the game. The Wildcats’ press led to turnovers and frustration on offense. Hayden went on a 16-1 run to open a 22-7 lead.
Ottawa missed all three field goal attempts in the quarter.
“When you have a team pushing back, you are not allowed to exactly what we practiced.”
Hayden led 24-10 at halftime. Ottawa trailed 29-18 at the end of the third, but still could not get any offense rolling.
“We don’t have any confidence,” McCullough said. “Nobody wants the ball. We’ve talked to them about getting the ball into the paint. You can get a 16-foot to 20-foot shot anytime you want. I have post players rolling the ball back out to the top of the key instead of taking the ball to the hole.”
Ottawa only had 26 field goal attempts. McCullough said Ottawa needs to have a mindset of attacking the hoop, especially against programs such as Hayden.
Tyra Lyday paced Ottawa with nine points.
Ottawa plays Tuesday at Spring Hill.
Hayden (39) — Stringer 4, Pimentel 5, Strecker 5, Schmidt 6, Lenherr 11, Lawlor 3, Beck 5.
Ottawa (24) — Lyday 9, Bones 4, Roecker 2, K. Fischer 2, Lewis 3, Moore 2, Davidson 1.